11 January 2018

Shonda Rhimes Shares How She Leads, Develops and Manage Her Team and Business

Shonda Rhimes is an author, television producer, screenwriter, and CEO of a television production company called ShondaLand. She is the creator of popular ABC shows Grey’s Anatomy, How to Get Away with Murder, and Scandal.

In an interview, Shonda talks on how she manages her business, relationship and being a boss lady.

On How She Starts Her Day

As Shonda stated in her interview, “I have three small children, so I try to get up well before them so that I can have some quiet time and be in the right head space for the day. I use that time to catch up on the news. Sometimes I use it to just do nothing, sometimes I use it to make notes for work.”
I believe that having me time before work is critical so that you can have time to clear your head and do things that you want to do before you have to do work for someone else.

On Developing Her Team

“In order to do all of these shows, Betsy [Beers, my producing partner] and I had to allow people to rise over the years. Sometimes people don’t want to be empowered because they are afraid of being the person to make the decisions.”

In my own line of work, I’ve learned that sometimes you have to first voluntarily train your team and then delegate tasks to them, even when it makes them uncomfortable because it is out of the normal daily duties. By doing this, you are forcing them to make decisions and learn more, which will hopefully inspire them to rise up to their own occasion and be more.

On how she encourages

You ever had someone complain and complain about an issue but have zero solutions to their problem? It’s pretty annoying huh? Similar to the rules in my own workplace that I manage, self-reliance is also highly encouraged in Shondaland. As Shonda told Fast Company, “At work I have a rule that you’re not allowed to come into my office unless you’re coming into my office with a solution to a problem, and not with a problem.”

Yes, Shonda!

She understands that good management =using your team

I totally believe that you are nothing without your team, and it looks like Auntie Shonda believes the same. In her interview, Shonda exclaimed, “First of all, I don’t do everything myself. Every show has a writers’ room. Grey’s writers’ room is huge—it’s 15 people.” Although Shonda is the mastermind behind her popular TV shows, she understands that her success couldn’t be achieved alone and that when you collaborate with others, magic happen.

At the end of the day she leaves work at work

How guilty are you at over-thinking about work once you get home and into the wee hours of the night? Hopefully not too guilty. Having work-life balance doesn’t just mean physically leaving the office on time; it also means truly leaving work at work and not doing anything work-related when your shift ends. Shonda appears to be a believer in work-life balance, and she said in her interview, “The last thing I do at night is make a list of all the things that are in my head so that I don’t think about them while I’m trying to sleep.”

Before you go to bed (or preferably when you leave work), make your to-do list for work and leave it right there (at work). Go home, focus on your own personal items, and spend needed time with your family and friends (and most importantly yourself).